Have you ever experienced pain, clicking, or popping in your jaw? Ever felt pressure or pain in the cheek or above your ear near your temple? Ever felt like it was really hard to open your mouth as wide as you could? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, you may be dealing with a problem in your TMJ, which is causing the secondary effects of TMD/TMS, TemporoMandibular Disease, or Syndrome.
While this issue is heavily influenced by your teeth and bite, you'd be shocked to know that the structure of the upper neck heavily influences the jaw as well.
Research showed that structural issues within the first three vertebrae in the neck, including the base of the skull, can alter the function and tension of the muscles surrounding the neck AND the muscle of the jaw. They measured muscle function and bite forces and noted a stark difference between people before and after chiropractic adjustments. Heck, the jaw itself, which has a disc in it just like in your spine, can shift out of place as well (which can be adjusted by both myself and Dr. Scott). It goes without saying that if you have a bad neck, you have a bad jaw; they’re that closely linked. For that simple fact, Dr. Scott and I always maintain that a close relationship be made between your dentist and us.
I have the pleasure of working closely with Dr. Nelly Silva, a functional dentist out of Collegeville, PA who specializes in TMD as well as airway issues. In fact, we are writing a book together along with other professionals as it relates to airways, TMJ issues, and overall health! There are so many resources out there for you to learn about and take control of your health, and I’m glad this will be included in those resources soon.
Bottom Line: if you experience any problems with your jaw area, please let us know by calling us at our Wilmington office. Our specialized chiropractic approach to TMJ pain and dysfunction may be just what your jaw needs to feel and function normally again. We love to help and prevent people from a lifetime of mainly eating mashed potatoes and smoothies.